Patient view

‘Cathy became my confidante’

Ellie Nash describes how respiratory nurse Cathy Mordaunt was tireless in her support during ‘the most difficult period of my life’

I was wary of a respiratory nurse becoming involved in my care. I had a good relationship with the respiratory consultants and, although I was unwell and things were difficult, I did not see what another nurse could add. I could not have been more wrong.

Now, 3 years on, and with aspects of my life remaining difficult, Cathy has become one of the main healthcare professionals involved in my care and the only one who has been there consistently. I would not have got through it without her.

Compassion

Cathy demonstrated unwavering compassion and dedication in my care during the most difficult period of my life. The saddest part is, Cathy is oblivious to the pivotal role she played. 

I was sick and continued to get sicker. Cathy understood the impact my health was having on my life and did everything possible to make things a little easier. When days became weeks during multiple hospital admissions, Cathy stopped by almost daily, sometimes for a quick hug and hello, at other times sacrificing her lunch break to check on me.

Anger

When I was an outpatient, Cathy was always available at the end of the phone for advice. I made her clinics run hours behind schedule while she gave me as much time as she felt I needed. I would get so angry with her at times, and could be so unpleasant, but she understood I was frustrated at the situation, not with her. She just made sure I left her clinic feeling a little brighter.

The title ‘respiratory nurse’ does not do Cathy justice. She became my confidante, the person I cried to, ranted to, broke down to, shared the awful hospital admissions with and the silver linings. Every part of my journey, she has been there.

I am lucky. I am better than I have been over recent years. I still see Cathy very frequently in clinic but I know her time has not been freed up just because she no longer spends hours with me. There will be other patients to help through difficult times. Likewise, if things deteriorate for me, I know Cathy will be there immediately, all over again.

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